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Dear Community Members, 

Uncommon Cause has been an annual celebration of the arts in our community for over 40 years. In addition to bringing recognition to the work of individual artists and individuals who support our work, Uncommon Cause has been the Arts Council’s primary fundraising event, drawing crowds of up to 400 people and raising the majority of annual funding for CAAC.
We are adapting to life in 2020 and, like other organizations, we’ve redesigned our fundraising model to protect the health of our community. We hope you’ll engage with our online Art Auction and Sale, or make a donation to support one of these transformative initiatives.

We are taking Uncommon Cause 2020 online, with four ways you can support the arts in Columbus.

Video by Echo Bravo


Work from local artists and designers is included in the Uncommon Cause 2020 Online Art & Design Auction and Student Sale benefiting the Columbus Area Arts Council.

The Auction and Sale are live now!
Auction listings will end at 12:00 pm on Saturday, August 29.
Sale listings will continue through Wednesday, September 9.

Works from the auction and sale will be on view at 411 Gallery at 411 Sixth Stree, August 19–September 9, 2020. 411 will have open hours on Friday afternoons, 12:00–4:00 pm for anyone who would like to see the work in person. Entry to the Gallery will be limited to 4 guests at a time. Masks are required upon entry. 411 will have masks available for those who do not have their own.

Pick-up will be available following the close of the exhibition on September 9. Please contact us at with any questions.

Click the link above or visit CAAC's eBay page to see the works and begin bidding!

Row 1:  Mixed Media Vase #1 by Rachel Kavathe   |   Spring 2013 by Daren Redman 
Row 2:  Idyll by Pierre Obando   |   Throne by Robert Pulley

CAAC has been the leading arts organization in Columbus, Indiana since 1972. Fulfilling our mission, “to strengthen the community through arts and culture,” with a vision “to be the central resource for the arts,” our work remains especially relevant as we pivot to inspire and uplift  the community through the challenges of 2020. 

With new online activities, exhibitions and virtual tours, and most recently The Mask Project, we remain committed to programming focused around education, engagement and enrichment, with a priority to make the arts accessible to everyone. Support for CAAC enables our organization to continue to provide innovative arts programs that highlight a broad range of creative talent from Columbus and beyond.


Council for Youth Development Youth Ambassador, Valeria Juarez-Trujillo, taking part in a photo shoot for The Mask Project. Mask fabric design by Pierre Obando. Photo by Maria Trujillo.

Dance Kaleidoscope in a Site-responsive Performance in concert with Exhibit Columbus. Site: "Soft Civic" by Bryony Roberts Studio at Columbus City Hall. Photo by Warrie Dennis.

Sarah Marsom leading an Artist-led Workshop: Tiny I.M. Pei, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Pei-designed Cleo Rogers Memorial Library. On view behind Sarah is "Respectfully submitted, Cleo Rogers," an exhibition by the Columbus Indiana Architectural Archives on the life of the Library's namesake. Photo by Warrie Dennis.


With support from our generous donors and many community partners , we launched 411 Gallery. Strategically located in downtown Columbus, CAAC and 411 Gallery have become active in the cultural development of 6th Street as a creative place and future Arts Alley. With close proximity to other art and cultural organizations, we are working to bring dynamic programs and community activities to this central corridor in the heart of the city – with plenty of space for social distancing.

Pictured: A proposed public art activation project in the 6th Street Arts Alley. Rendering and concept by LAA Office.

Studio 207 is an open, multifunctional space at The Workshop, a collaborative workplace in Columbus. Following in the footsteps of 411 Gallery, Studio 207 will launch as a 16-month pop-up project to increase opportunities for community engagement and creativity. While CAAC’s primary operations will continue to be based in downtown Columbus, this second location north of town will provide a flexible workspace for artist-led workshops, public art projects, and artist residencies. Studio 207’s open layout and high ceilings will create a safe and welcoming environment for participants to social distance – and to be inspired and uplifted – during the time of COVID-19.

Exterior photo of Studio 207 at The Workshop. 
Renderings of a studio space and The Workshop main building by LAA Office.

Although this year is like no other, we believe our mission, “to strengthen the community through arts and culture,” continues to be both relevant and essential. When the arts are at work, communities are not only stronger, they are more equitable, providing everyone with access to the arts. 

The Online Art & Design Auction and Student Sale features work by local and regional talent, as well as a selection of works by graduate students in the J. Irwin Miller Architecture Program. In addition to these one-of-a-kind works of art and design, we have included a few experiences to broaden your horizons and enhance your cultural palate. And, for those who want to give to CAAC or to a specific initiative, we have options to donate to general operations and specific projects that we are currently working towards funding: Studio 207 at The Workshop and the Sixth Street Arts Alley Activation Project. 

These future projects will unite us and shape our cultural identity, while helping to heal and restore our community for years to come. Thank you to everyone who has donated their time, talent and treasure to our annual arts fundraiser, and many thanks to our patrons, who continue to make the arts a priority for Columbus! 

Kathryn Armstrong, Executive Director

CAAC is a non-profit organization supported by private and public donations, the City of Columbus, the Indiana Arts Commission, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Cummins Inc. is the Columbus Area Arts Council's Investor-level sponsor in 2020.
Copyright © 2020 Columbus Area Arts Council, All rights reserved.

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